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What is the Singapore Physical Activity Guidelines (SPAG)?
Jointly developed by the Health Promotion Board and SportSG, the Singapore Physical Activity Guidelines (SPAG) is a document which provides nationally standardised, evidence-based physical activity and sedentary behaviour recommendations. SPAG aims to raise awareness of the different recommendations and their associated health benefits.
Why is the Singapore Physical Activity Guidelines (SPAG) important?
Engaging in a variety of physical activities and movement is important to maximising health benefits and making every move count. The SPAG encourages this by highlighting daily life examples, recommendations and solutions to empower everyone to be sufficiently active, reduce sedentary behaviour and build strength, balance and flexibility.
As a national reference material, these guidelines are made relatable by being presented according to demographic segments and individuals’ life stages. Anyone striving to pursue a more active lifestyle can refer to the segment(s) most relevant to them for digestible information and practical bite-sized tips.
Practitioners and Policymakers will also find the SPAG’s comprehensive information about physical activity and consumer-friendly recommendations useful in guiding efforts to promote active living in Singapore.
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SPAG helps parents and caregivers recognise the importance of movement for children right from birth, before they even start learning to walk. The guidelines provide tips on how preschool children can gradually accumulate more physical activity as they grow by engaging in a variety of activities and limiting sedentary time.
Meeting these recommendations helps build the foundation for preschool children to stay active and promote the development of movement skills.
School Children & Youths
SPAG promotes the importance of engaging school children and youths in a variety of physical activities and limiting their sedentary behaviour, both during school and leisure time. Meeting these recommendations promotes the development of movement skills, stronger muscles and bones,and better cognitive function, which could contribute to their school performance.
Developing active habits from young can better prepare and help children to continue leading an active lifestyle as they transit towards adulthood.
SPAG highlights that adults obtain substantial health benefits when they engage in moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity of between 150 and 300 minutes per week, which can be accumulated from any duration of activity throughout the week. On top of this, SPAG also recommends that adults engage in a variety of other activities to reap the additional health benefits, such as exercises for developing muscular strength and light-intensity activities to breakup sedentary periods.
Every minute moving counts,and engaging in a variety of activities helps promote better physical and mental health outcomes.
Through user-friendly infographics and tips, SPAG empowers older adults to find opportunities to stay active while building their muscular strength and functional balance. It is important to regularly participate in a variety of activities at this life stage as it can help older adults better manage frailty and common lifestyle chronic diseases like diabetes and hypertension.
Engaging in a sufficient amount and variety of physical activities and limiting sedentary behaviour can help older adults achieve a better quality of life.
Pregnant & Postpartum Women
Engaging in a variety of physical activities and reducing sedentary behaviour remains important during and after pregnancy as the health benefits outweigh the associated risks. Regular physical activity can help minimise excessive pregnancy-related weight gain and improve mental wellbeing postpartum.
Accompanied by their doctor’s advice where appropriate, pregnant and postpartum women will find the SPAG helpful for its bite-sized suggestions on how to stay active.
Persons with Disabilities
For persons with disabilities, staying active can help improve and manage their conditions. Regularly engaging in a variety of physical activities and reducing sedentary behaviour is important as the health benefits outweigh the associated risks.
Housed in a user-friendly infographic, the SPAG’s stay-active tips for this group include taking a phased and adapted approach as well as choosing group activities to leverage the support and motivation from peers.
Practitioners & Policymakers
SPAG facilitates ground-up initiatives and policies to promote an active living culture in Singapore by providing evidence-based recommendations. As a national reference material, it facilitates greater synergy across multiple stakeholders and sectors to promote physical activity, reduce sedentary behaviour and help Singaporeans obtain the associated health benefits.
If you are interested to learn more about SPAG, please download the complete document by clicking here.
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